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Water Science & Technology—WST Vol 61 No 3 pp 763–769 © IWA Publishing 2010 doi:10.2166/wst.2010.857

Inhibitory effects of golden thread (Coptis chinensis) and berberine on Microcystis aeruginosa

Shulin Zhang, Bo Zhang, Kezhi Xing, Xiumei Zhang, Xiuping Tian and Wei Dai

Fisheries College, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266003, P. R. China
Key Laboratory for Aquatic Ecology and Aquaculture of Tianjin, Department of Fisheries Science, Tianjin Agricultural University, Jinjing Road 22, Tianjin 300384, P. R. China E-mail: shulin63@eyou.com


The effects of 40 Chinese herbs on Microcystis aeruginosa growth were monitored spectrophotometrically. Golden thread (Coptis chinensis) exhibited the best inhibitory effects. Cell density of M. aeruginosa decreased with the increasing concentrations of golden thread and the prolongation of exposure time. Decreases in protein content, carbohydrate content, and chlorophyll a content were observed in a golden thread concentration-dependent manner after 96 h exposure. Changes in cell density, protein content, carbohydrate content, and chlorophyll a content of M. aeruginosa exposed to berberine, the main component of golden thread, were also investigated. It was observed that berberine exhibited the same inhibitory effects on M. aeruginosa. The results suggested that golden thread could inhibit M. aeruginosas growth effectively, and berberine might be the main allelochemical implementing the inhibitory effects of golden thread.

Keywords: allelochemical; berberine; golden thread; inhibitory effects; Microcystis aeruginosa

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